Busy week…

The state budget is still being negotiated. Several of our bills, including AB1800(Ma) to limit out-of-pocket costs, just passed the Senate Health Committee. Prop 29 is now down by only 12,500 votes with over 300,000 votes still to count. The Exchange just made some decisions on navigators, and is seeking comments about its next federal grant by Friday. And the list goes on.

But the real news is the upcoming Supreme Court decision, which may be tomorrow (!), or next week on Monday June 25th or Thursday June 28th. Here are REVISED version of the TALKING POINTS in response to specific scenarios. Again, these talking points can be shared with trusted colleagues, but not with the media or the public. Obviously, we will refine them depending on the actual decision.

We have been using the Supreme Court case as a way to promote the benefits of the law, and to be clear to voters what would be lost if the ACA is fully repealed. But we have gotten questions about what would continue in California law if the ACA is struck down in its entirety. We have ATTACHED a chart with all the relevant California laws we have passed, and which would stand and/or be impacted by the law’s invalidation. Some things will remain, from coverage for young adults up to age 26 to maternity benefits to protections against rescission. But what would be lost is immense.

However, if the law is fully or even mostly upheld, our stance will be to declare victory to go full speed ahead with the reform’s Californians so desperately need. Even if the mandate (and/or some related provisions) is struck down, California can go ahead with the other 90% of the benefits, and should work to fulfill the full promise of the law—and the effort to preserve guaranteed issue and other consumer protections will be the fight of the next few months in our state legislature.

More to come. This will obviously be a major topic of discussion at the Health Access California Board Meeting on Tuesday, July 10th, in Los Angeles at The California Endowment, from 10am-3pm. Please RSVP to Kate Burch at kburch@health-access.org.

After the meeting, from 4-6pm at the same location, Health Access will host a book signing and presentation by Richard Kirsch, the former national campaign manager for the Health Care for America Now! campaign to pass the Affordable Care Act. He’s on a book tour for his memoir from the effort, “Fighting for Our Health: The Epic Battle To Make Health Care A Right in the United States”. It’s a great read and it will be a good public event to help frame our post-SCOTUS work, nationally and here in California. Please let Kate know if you intend to stay for that as well.